Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Velvet Underground and Warhol Foundation settle lawsuit

Velvet Underground founders Lou Reed and John Cale, named as plaintiffs in the lawsuit, had argued that Andy Warhol's banana sticker design for the group's debut album had become an iconic symbol of the group. They objected to it's commercial licensing to other parties, such as Apple, for use on iPhones and iPads.

The group were initially the house band for Warhol's factory and he acted as their manager (insisting on top billing for Nico, who he added to the line-up), producer for their 1967 self-titled debut, and designer of the "Peel slowly and see" sticker image in question.

A trial, set for mid-summer has been averted, but the exact terms of the settlement have not been disclosed. For more information visit the CBC here or Rolling Stone, here.

The band split up in 1973 but Reed had left the year before, Cale several years prior and Nico before him. Warhol's involvement with the group diminished after the poor sales of the debut. Cale and Reed collaborated on the 'concept' album Songs for Drella, in tribute to Warhol in 1990 (Drella, a contraction of Dracula and Cinderella, was a common nickname for Warhol at the Factory). Two years later the band reunited for a tour and live album.

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